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Sip your coffee quietly, act kindly

Hi there,

I hope you're well.

This week, we saw some particularly disturbing history take place in front of our eyes at the US Capitol building. We're living through a time where facts seem optional, and people are being blinded by what they're told and what they want to see, as opposed to what's actually going on around them.

We're living through a very difficult time, and I think many of us are regularly finding our wits' end. Time and again, I find myself trying to center on kindness and optimism to get through my day. Remember that we all play a part in the bigger picture. It's up to each of us to do our small part to make things better.

Living selfishly pays off in the short term, but will inevitably cause harm to the world around you and the people you care about somewhere down the line.

Today, tomorrow, as you're going about your day, I urge you to be kinder. Be more intentional and more thoughtful with the people around you. The people you're sharing a space with can benefit from a tiny bit of kindness. People you've never met can benefit from a tiny bit of kindness, and certainly you can benefit from a tiny bit of kindness.

The path forward is unclear, but I think that we can get through this together. I'm reluctant to say that we're on the homestretch because I've seen time and again that that isn't the case. But I have my eyes on the hopeful horizon, and I hope you do too.

Photo of a monstera deliciosa plant casting a shadow on a wall behind it
Sometimes the light catches things just right.

What I'm reading this week

I'm making my way through a book called The Bitcoin Standard. It's more-or-less about the history of money, and the role that Bitcoin has played so far in advancing financial markets around the world, as well as some speculation on what's to come.

I enjoyed the first few chapters, which leaned heavily on history - but have found it harder and harder to get through as the book caught up with modern day. The author has some pretty strong takes on pop-culture that distract from the content of the book... even if they're a bit funny. Imagine being so annoyed by Miley Cyrus that you interrupt an otherwise-informative book to complain about her pop music as it relates to Mozart... what a strange take to put in a book about money.

I'll admit that it's overall the book is bit dense, and leans heavily on a solid basic understanding of some economic and financial terms - but I learned quite a bit by stopping to do so some research in the early chapters of the book. Still I'm 50-50 on recommending this one. If you're really interested in Bitcoin, give it a go - and tweet at me if you make it farther than I have 🤣

Some things you might enjoy

  • 🎨 My friends and former colleagues over at Gymnasium are hosting a free webinar on Accessibility and Inclusive Design on Jan 21. Register here before the event fills up.
  • ☕️ Did you know coffee tastes better in a quiet environment?. According to a study by scientific journal Food Quality and Preference, sipping your cappuccino in your kitchen or a quiet cafe is a measurably better experience than if you're in a noisy room. Fascinating!
  • 🌳 If you're in the UK, my friends over at Protect Earth are looking for volunteers to help plant 500 trees on the weekend of Jan 23-24. Register here if you're available.
  • 👩‍⚖️ Current events in the US have been concerning, confusing, and scary for the past few weeks. Opening Arguments is self-described as A legal podcast that helps you make sense of the news. I've been listening for about 4 years now, and it's helped me make sense of it all, and to understand a bit about what's coming. Give it a listen.

Keep up the kindness, and continue to be excellent to each other. Thanks for reading Tiny Improvements. Talk soon!

Mike

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© 2019-2022 Mike Bifulco

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Disclaimer: 👋🏽 Hi there. I work as a Product Builder at [Incognito Mode]. These are my opinions, and not necessarily the views of my employer.
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